Bob was born just a few miles from where he died. Last year David and I invited Bob to show us his birthplace and childhood homes, and the location of the one room school house that is no longer standing, but where he completed his elementary years. Oh the stories that Bob shared with us about the days when his mother collected laundry from the residents of Milford on her horse and buggy, than washed them on a primitive scrubbing board. Bob's father hand cut and hewn trees, which he manually dragged out of the woods to be made into railroad ties. And many other stories too numerous to mention here.
In the few short years that I knew Bob, his ability to share his stories and to solicit and remember the details about our lives was astounding. David and I rejoiced after visits with Bob, which were often filled with laughter and occassionally a few tears, there were stories of struggles and good times, triumphs and losses. Bob never thought of himself as an old person, and was always expressing gratitude for the people in his life, of which he had many friends who looked out for him. Bob also had some favorite expressions:
"Do drop in."
"I eat like I work, I don't work much, so I don't eat much."
"Here's looking up your address!"
"We're friends to the end."
The essence of Bob remains with me, my life is enriched having known him, and I'm grateful to have been a friend to the end. So Bob, we'll miss you and "here's looking up your address!"